England’s Chris Woakes is ‘best in world’ for line and length, says Nasser Hussain after Australia demolition | Cricket News


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Nasser Hussain

Cricket Expert & Columnist

Chris Woakes took 2-23 and Chris Jordan 3-17 as England hammered Australia by eight wickets in Dubai to register their third straight victory at the T20 World Cup; watch England vs Sri Lanka on Monday from 1.30pm, live on Sky Sports Cricket

Last Updated: 30/10/21 9:59pm

Chris Woakes appeals for lbw during the T20 World Cup match against Australia

Chris Woakes appeals for lbw during the T20 World Cup match against Australia

England’s Chris Woakes ranks among the world’s best white-ball bowlers when it comes to delivering consistent line and length, according to Sky Sports pundit Nasser Hussain.

Woakes set the tone for England’s resounding eight-wicket victory over old foes Australia at the T20 World Cup, reducing them to 15-3 inside the powerplay after a superb opening spell – along with a breathtaking one-handed catch to dismiss Steve Smith.

He finished with figures of 2-23, while fellow seamer Chris Jordan took 3-17 to bowl the Australians out for just 125 – and Hussain, who had forecast earlier in the tournament that Woakes might make way once Mark Wood regained fitness, feels simplicity was the key.

NEVER MIND THE FUNKY STUFF

“I thought England were so spot on with Woakes and Jordan that they didn’t allow any domination. It was a real exhibition on how to bowl and not to change it.

Chris Jordan celebrates the dismissal of Australia captain Aaron Finch with England team-mate Jonny Bairstow

Chris Jordan celebrates the dismissal of Australia captain Aaron Finch with England team-mate Jonny Bairstow

“Sometimes in white-ball cricket you need the funky stuff – the yorkers and slower-ball bouncers. [To hit] top of off, top of off – Woakes is the best in the world at doing that.

“You’re only allowed to do what the opposition allow you to do. David Warner did try and shimmy down the pitch to Woakes.

“But Woakes bowls that length and it’s very difficult to hit, especially when there’s sideways movement. When you lose one wicket and then you lose two, you can’t just keep going again.”

CAN WOOD FORCE HIS WAY BACK INTO THE TEAM?

“Chris Woakes didn’t play for five years in international T20 cricket before this summer, and that’s why he was vulnerable, because Wood has been part of that plan.

“What they’ve found out here in the UAE is that Woakes, for these conditions, hits the best length. Sometimes you come to this part of the world and hitting length, you get smashed out of the ground.

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“At the moment England are just looking unbeatable and you keep the same team, especially when someone hasn’t played for a week and a half and you’ve got a winning team. No-one’s making a case to leave themselves out.”

Sky Sports pundit Rob Key

“That’s how good this side is, you’ve got no (Jofra) Archer – a world-class white-ball bowler, no (Ben) Stokes, no (Sam) Curran, no Wood and they’re still putting in performances like this.

“You’d think Wood is going to come back in at some stage but you could now be getting to the stage where, when you get injured, you open the door for other people by giving them a chance.”

AUSTRALIA’S BATTING LOOKS FRAGILE

“It’s easy when you’re chasing, you see it as a low score and you just thrash it. When you’ve been a batting line-up together for so long, you know if (Jason) Roy gets out, someone else will come in and have a go.

“They don’t play together very much for some reason, this Australia T20 side, so they’re all a little bit fragile with ‘if I don’t get some runs, who will?’.

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“They left the extra batter (Mitchell Marsh) out today and played the spinning all-rounder (Ashton Agar) and they seemed to be one stage behind with their selection.

“Their batting line-up looks a little bit short of confidence but I think what you’ve got to do is give credit to England’s length and line.

JOS BUTTLER’S BRUTAL HITTING

“He gets all his work from his wrists, the way he just hits through the ball and doesn’t lift his head.

“You look at some of the great hitters of a cricket ball, they almost don’t overhit – they practise range hitting so well and they are wonderful strikers of the ball.

Liam Livingstone hailed a 'perfect England performance' and a brilliant innings from Jos Buttler as his side thumped Australia by eight wickets in Dubai

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Liam Livingstone hailed a ‘perfect England performance’ and a brilliant innings from Jos Buttler as his side thumped Australia by eight wickets in Dubai

Liam Livingstone hailed a ‘perfect England performance’ and a brilliant innings from Jos Buttler as his side thumped Australia by eight wickets in Dubai

“That was a real compliment from Liam Livingstone where he said he thinks Jos Buttler is the best striker of a white ball in world cricket at the moment.”

Watch the T20 World Cup live on Sky between now and November 14.



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